Monday, April 25, 2011

Sixers Avoid Sweep & The Flyers Force Game 7

Sunday was one of the most exciting Easter’s in history.  Not just because of the riveting Easter egg hunt but because Philadelphia sports was king for a day.  The Phillies polished off a four game sweep of the Padres, winning their fifth in a row overall.  The Sixers stayed alive and forced Miami to play at least one more and the Flyers won in dramatic overtime fashion in Buffalo.  Combine those wins with some great brews and even better food and Easter Sunday was one of the best in recent memory.
The Sixers came into Sundays game 4 of the Eastern conference quarterfinals facing elimination.  Not wanting to be swept in addition to not wanting to allow Miami to win the series on their home court, the Sixers stepped up their game and came back to steal an 86-82 win.  Evan Turner and Lou Williams both came up big, scoring 17 a piece and Andre Iguodala finally showed up in the series, scoring 19 and adding 5 rebounds and 4 assist. 
The key to the Sixers win was defense.  They held Miami to 38.5% from the field in addition to only 21.7% from three point range.  The Sixers on the other hand shot 40.5% and 44.4% from the three.  After being outrebounded on Thursday night 50 to 34, the Sixers fought back and took the paint in game 4, out-rebounding the Heat 49-41.  The end result was a game 4 win and the Sixers live to play another day.  That day will be Wednesday in Miami.
The Flyers Sabres series has been an up and down affair.  It seems as though the Flyers could have easily swept Buffalo, but instead they now have to play a game 7.   Every game has been decided by one goal and two games have gone into overtime, one ending in the Sabres favor and the other the Flyers. 
The Flyers trailed 4-3 going into the third period when Scott Hartnell answered the call with a goal with 10:43 left to go.  Tied at 4-4, the Flyers forced overtime and then a goal by Ville Leino with 4:43 to go forced a game 7 back in Philadelphia.  The Sabres are a scrappy team that has given the Flyers nothing, if the Flyers are going to finish the job on Tuesday night in Philly they will have to take it from Buffalo.  I expect another close one goal game and I hope it goes they way of the orange and black. 
A great Sunday keeps Philadelphia’s hopes alive.  The Flyers may have a better chance to advance then the Sixers, but the Sixers have been in every game except one and the opportunity to force a game six is there for the taking. 

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